Skylar McCartney on runways in Paris, New York
Balancing runway shows at New York and Paris fashion weeks with high school coursework can be challenging, but Monroe teen Skylar McCartney makes it work.
When she's not at a photo shoot or modeling in a show, McCartney says she's just like any other 17-year-old girl, although what she doesn't add is that most kids her age don't have contracts with one of the largest model management companies in the world — Wilhelmina Models.
Standing at 5'11", the blonde with piercing blue eyes said she has been modeling since she was 13 years old, having been discovered after years of participating in pageants.
"I started doing pageants when I was just a kid," she said. "I've always liked taking pictures."
When she was 12, McCartney won a modeling scholarship to John Robert Powers New Orleans after taking home a crown at the 2007 National American Miss Pageant.
At age 14, she signed with Next Model Management after winning the title of Miss iPOP! (International Presentation of Performers) at a convention in Las Vegas.
McCartney said she stayed with Next Model Management for about two years until she recently signed with Wilhelmina in September.
She said she just returned from her first time modeling in Paris Fashion Week in March and described the experience as "very busy." She said her "non-stop" days can begin as early as 5 a.m. and last until late into the night, which she said is typical during fashion seasons.
It is also common to be flown out to a photo shoot with limited notice, she said, adding that the farthest place she's ever traveled to for the job was Argentina.
But despite the hectic schedule, McCartney said modeling can be a fun and rewarding career.
"It's exciting because sometimes you get chosen by the big designers that everyone wants," she said.
McCartney said she has been able to work for designers such as Joanna Mastroianni and Alice + Olivia.